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Craig Brown
"My position is irrelevant"
 real 28k

Thursday, 18 November, 1999, 14:40 GMT
We'll be back for World Cup - Brown
Hendry's big-hearted performance was mirrored throughout the Scotland ranks

Proud Scotland coach Craig Brown is vowing to re-group his demoralised side ready for an assault on the next World Cup.

Battle of Britain


Brown, who has already stated his intention to continue in post despite watching his side crash out of the European Championships, refused to answer persistent questions about his own future at a Thursday afternoon press conference.

"All I will say is that every other coach of a Scottish team has been allowed one failure."

Instead Brown chose to issue a defiant rallying cry and defence of his squad's brave but unsuccessful Euro 2000 qualification campaign.

"My position is irrelevant, what's concenring me is that we are not at the European Championships.

"But for the two years Sweden were not in the World Cup - we were, and the Czech Republic were not in the World Cup when we were.

"This year the Czechs and the Swedes both made it (to Euro 2000) after winning their groups and that has ot be our objective, to learn from what they did and get a team ready for the World Cup."

Brown defended his tactics in the two-legged play-off, especially from the first game at Hampden Park when Paul Scholes' two goals proved enough to give England overall victory.

"The easiest selection in the world is the hindsight 11.

" But tactically I believe I did everything spot on. It is easy to say that a 2-0 down at home, why not make a substitution.

"But you do that t improve the team. England made a substitution and it weakened them. We had a team that was playing well. Yes we had let in two bad goals but the important thing was not to let in any more.

Honour

"Informed observers believe that was tactically sound."

Brown's contract does not expire until December 2001 and he has said he intends to honour it.

"All this stuff about my contract and my position between these two matches has been very unnecessary. The players have been very supportive, not that I asked them to be.

"People should remember we don't lose many games and have never lost two successive competitive matches and we have a habit of scoring away from home.

"I feel really gutted that we failed to qualify for Euro 2000. It is a major disappointment and I feel very upset.

"I felt that we didn't have any breaks in the two games and I couldn't have asked for anything more from my players."


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See also:
17 Nov 99 |  Battle of Britain
We've a long way to go - Keegan
17 Nov 99 |  Battle of Britain
We deserved to qualify - Hendry
17 Nov 99 |  Battle of Britain
Sorry England scrape into Euro 2000
17 Nov 99 |  Battle of Britain
England v Scotland - picture gallery

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